Security firm Kaspersky Lab has begun to independently examine Apple’s Mac OS X platform and found that it’s highly vulnerable to malware. “As Mac OS X market share continues to increase, we expect cyber-criminals to continue to develop new types of malware and attack methods, ” the company’s CTO Nikolai Grebennikov said. “In order to meet these new threats, Kaspersky Lab has been conducting an in-depth analysis of Mac OS X vulnerabilities and new forms of malware.” Kaspersky Lab co-founder and chief executive Eugene Kaspersky previously said that Apple is a decade behind Microsoft in terms of computer security, a view Grebennikov shares.
“Our first investigations show Apple doesn’t pay enough attention to security. For example, Oracle closed a vulnerability in Java, which was a target for a major botnet several months ago,” Grebennikov said. “Apple blocked Oracle from updating Java on Mac OS, and they perform all the updates themselves. They only released the patch a few weeks ago – two or three months after the Oracle patch. That’s far too long.” Grebennikov said the existence of the botnet shows that “Apple’s security model isn’t perfect.”
While the executive claimed that he has yet to identify any iOS-specific malware, he expects to see iPads and iPhones being infected by malware in 2013. “Our experience tells us that in the near future, perhaps in a year or so, we will see the first malware targeting iOS,” he said.
Grebennikov maintains that the security analysis Kaspersky Lab has been conducting is independent of Apple, however the Cupertino-based company “is open to collaborating with us regarding new Mac OS X vulnerabilities and malware that we identify during our analysis.”